It’s been rumored and debunked repeatedly over the past months, but finally the truth comes out: Mass Effect 3 will have multiplayer!
The cat was out of the bag yesterday, when cover art for next month’s issue of Australian gaming magazine PC PowerPlay featuring the announcement found its way to the internet. After that, BioWare confirmed it via Twitter, but asked us to stay tuned for more details. Well, thanks to an FAQ posted on the BioWare forums, we have them!
Mass Effect 3‘s new multiplayer will support up to four players over Xbox Live, PSN, and PC, allowing gamers to play together to tackle a series of co-op based side missions separate from the space opera’s main storyline. Players will get to choose character class and race to create a squad “to liberate key territories from enemy control.”
Interestingly, success in multiplayer, while not affecting the storyline, will have an impact on the single player campaign, “giving players an alternative method of achieving the ultimate victory against the greatest threat of mankind.” Perhaps freeing these key territories will give you som much needed help in the final battle?
Because this war with the Reapers is on a galactic scale, BioWare is also introducing the “Galaxy at War” system in Mass Effect 3. As the player allocates resources, armies, weapons, etc. for the final battle with the Reapers, the “Galactic Readiness” level increases. This level can increase in a number of ways, although details of that are still being kept close to the chest. Presumably, that “alternative method” from completing multiplayer will involve a maxed out Readiness rating, allowing the entire galaxy to pick up some of the slack for a change, instead of leaving the suicide mission to Shepard and his/her crew.
In any case, stay tuned for more details as BioWare releases them. When we hear any definitive news, we’ll keep you apprised in the Fridge.
Mass Effect 3 takes to the stars on March 6, 2012 for the Xbox 360, PS3, and PC.